Lost Murdie Lode of Taylor Park, Gunnison Country of central Colorado
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Thread: Lost Murdie Lode of Taylor Park, Gunnison Country of central Colorado

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  1. #1
    us
    Grrrrr!!!

    Oct 2005
    FL
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    Lost Murdie Lode of Taylor Park, Gunnison Country of central Colorado

    The historic Gunnison Country of central Colorado encompasses the high mountain parks lying along the headwaters of the Gunnison River, just west of the Continental Divide. It is a vast and rugged area containing some of Colorado's most beautiful landscapes and scenery. Bounded on the south by the sprawling Powderhorn District, the Gunnison region extends northward to the rugged Elk Mountains and nearby Ruby Range. These towering peaks form the headwaters of the Slate River and its tributary the East River. The Continental Divide comprises the eastern boundary of Gunnison Country while the West Elk Mountains rise up along its western edge. The Continental Divide in this part of Colorado runs along the crest of the breathtaking Sawatch Range. This rugged mountain chain forms the headwaters of Quartz Creek and Taylor River. It is here that the beautiful high mountain sanctuary known as Taylor Park lies.


    Historic Taylor Park lies 30 miles northeast of the town of Gunnison, near the headwaters of the Taylor River. Lying at an average elevation of 9000 feet, Taylor Park and its smaller companion Union Park, are two of Colorado's most beautiful high-mountain basins. Taylor Park is drained by several tributaries of the Taylor River including Willow, Texas, Illinois, Pieplant, and Red Mountain Creeks. Known to the Utes as the "Valley of the Gods", Taylor Park was a stronghold of the Indians prior to the early 1870's. It was a very perilous place to enter as many prospectors found to their sorrow.


    The first recorded gold strikes in Taylor Park were made by prospector Jim Taylor in 1860. Taylor was a veteran prospector who had cut his teeth on the 1859 rush to Cherry Creek and Clear Creek. In 1860, he entered the Gunnison country, using Lake Pass as his portal to the high mountain park on the other


    side of the Divide. Here, he found placer gold in nearly every stream he panned. Later that year, with partners Ben and Charlie Grey andGus Lamb, Taylor panned gold out of the stream known as Willow Creek using his tin drinking cup. Initially known as "Grey's Diggings", the area eventually became known as the Tincup District after Jim Taylor's original discovery. Taylor River and the beautiful park at its head were both named for this intrepid prospector and pioneer.


    Taylor Park is home to a number of gold-producing areas including the lode deposits at the Pieplant Mine and the placer deposits of the Taylor Park Mining District. The area is also home to several well-documented lost gold mines, one of which lies somewhere on the slopes of Cross Mountain, 6 miles south of Taylor Park Reservoir. Cross Mountain forms the southern boundary of Union Park, site of the Lottis strikes of 1861. Discovered in 1890, the lost gold-bearing quartz vein was said to be 10 feet thick! Ore from the vein assayed out at $440 per ton.


    Taylor Park is also home to a fabulous lost vein of gold-bearing quartz known as the Lost Murdie Lode of Taylor Park. Named for its discoverer, an engineer from Topeka, Kansas named W.D. Murdie, the Lost Murdie Lode lies hidden somewhere in the park. The gold-bearing vein crops out in the streambed of one of the many creeks that drain the park. It was here that W. D. Murdie spotted a 15-inch wide band of gold-bearing quartz during one of his visits to the area. He gathered samples of the ore which turned out to contain 2400 ounces of silver and 95 ounces of gold per ton! Unfortunately, when he returned to Taylor Park he was unable to locate the vein. He never did. The Lost Murdie Lode remains hidden to this day.
    Prest Olives and cyzak like this.
    scouring the central NY area for treasure always happy to get leads and buddies to dig with and learn with!

  2. #2
    us
    Jan 2016
    South of Gunnison, Gold Basin
    F2
    2,047
    2463 times
    Prospecting
    I found two gold bearing quartz veins cutting across creeks in two neighboring gulches this summer. Theres another possible third gulch where the quartz vein may be present also but I havent been there yet.
    Theres gold below the vein but no gold upstream from it.
    One of the gulches is old patented land so I couldn't dig there but the neighboring gulches are open with some signs of the old timers being there in the past in the bigger one. Looks like they worked the top few feet of gravels for placers but the vein wasnt worked and the old diggings dont go all the way up to the quartz, just small partial diggings.
    Took us all day to locate that area so I didnt get much work done but the quartz is visible at the surface crossing the entire valley floor. Gold is downstream, none above the vein.
    I need to go back and dig up some so I can crush it. I'm trying to locate the owner of a patented section to see if I can cross his land for easier access. Otherwise its a helluva hike in and worse going out back over the mountain with heavy digging tools. I need a mule or a domesticated moose for this one.
    I'll take some pics next summer when the snow melts but it might be my Lost Murdie Lode!
    I wish I would have gotten pics of this.
    KevinInColorado likes this.

  3. #3
    us
    Author of a book about finding gold in Colorado

    Jan 2012
    Summit County, Colorado
    Grizzly Goldtrap Explorer & Motherlode, Gold Cube with Banker on top, Bazooka Goldtrap sluices, Angus Mackirk Expedition, Gold-n-Sand Xtream Hand pump
    6,918
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    Prospecting
    Exciting and Impressive!

  4. #4
    us
    Jul 2018
    Mountains of Western Colorado
    Garrett, General Mathematics, Geometry,Crystal ball,Noggin
    1,230
    2142 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Thanks for sharing this info KGCnewbieseeker. I have spent a small amount of time in the area of Taylor Park lots of interesting ground to look at up there its the altitude I like to be in.
    The mountains have rules.They are harsh rules,but they are there,and if you keep to them you are safe.A mountain is not like men. A mountain is sincere. The weapons to conquer it exists inside you,inside your soul.

  5. #5
    us
    Jan 2016
    South of Gunnison, Gold Basin
    F2
    2,047
    2463 times
    Prospecting
    Yes its close for me and I'm in love with that place. Taylor Park is amazing and the mineralization is mind blowing. I would love to live up there and own property there.
    I only made it to a couple of creeks this summer on my list but I found gold and found some great leads. Both are worth going back for more testing and I'm hoping for a dang nugget from that vein! If the vein is that close to the surface, I'm hoping the bedrock will be right there too.
    You know how it goes theres never enough time but it keeps the fire burning.
    I'm in a good place at home now that I can spend more weekends prospecting this summer. I did nothing but bust my butt at home and at work all summer last year to afford some time away so I can focus on finding some gold this summer.
    Im so excited I can hardly stand it. I find myself staring at my maps and notes during the day and daydreaming about when i was up there earlier, where i would camp, what tools I'll need and clues I had seen that the glaciers had left. It can almost drive you nuts.
    Finding gold in the wild is one of the best feelings in the world.
    KevinInColorado likes this.

  6. #6
    us
    Jan 2016
    South of Gunnison, Gold Basin
    F2
    2,047
    2463 times
    Prospecting
    We are going up to see if we can ski in tomorrow. Should only be a few miles but I'm pretty sure the road to Tincup is closed for snowmobiles now.
    I'll see if I can get some pics, usually less snow in the south facing slopes.
    I'm not sure what tools to take if I can even do anything at all, could be tons of snow. We have alot at my place and usually more up there.
    I was thinking a rock hammer, pan, rubber gloves, chisel, hand scooper, things like that. An ore bag if I can find the vein.
    Probably wont be able to shovel or use a pick at all, just too frozen.
    I just want to get out and find a better access and get eyes on the area.
    I need a break from staring at my maps and daydreaming!
    If I dont get out and have an adventure I'll chew my fingernails off pretty soon hehe.

    I wish ole Murdie was here to see this one.
    Hes actually from my same hometown, Topeka Kansas.
    KevinInColorado likes this.

 

 

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